kastrel comments on Celebrating All Who Are in Effective Altruism - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: kastrel  (EA Profile) 21 January 2016 12:56:39PM 4 points [-]

I don't know about dedicated people being better at recruitment. I have found my friends to be more receptive to me as a 'softcore EA' because we can relate to each others' lifestyles easily and they are more likely to make small changes than large ones. If I donated a really high proportion of my income (say 50%), I think I would not talk about that with them as they would find it instinctively off-putting to consider such a large change. I actually don't talk about the pledge at all with them unless they already seem keen for fear of sounding too 'hardcore'.

Of course, maybe if you're super dedicated you're going to try and recruit more often and with more people, so you may have better results. My point is just that I think 'softcore' may be more relatable for non EAs and that can be good to start conversations.

Comment author: Linch 22 January 2016 03:45:00AM *  1 point [-]

Congratulations on having friends who're receptive to you! And thank you so much for sharing, we definitely need more data points as the movement grows. :)

I wrote on Facebook before that I think while being normal and relatable is a good hook to get people interested in EA, I don't think it will actually make it more likely to make your friends interested than if you're very dedicated. In particular, I think there is a confusion between "emulatable" and "marketable" efforts:


Put another way, if Person A, who is truly obsessed with making the world a better place is just as good (or, it sometimes implied, worse) at persuading other people to make the world a better place than Person B, who is only moderately interested in doing so, then this should come across as a huge surprise. It should not be tacitly assumed. Rather, Person A is doing something Very Wrong, and figuring out ways to correct this mistake should become a huge priority in EA.